Andrew Brown | Granta

Andrew Brown

Andrew Brown was born in 1955 in London. After writing for the Spectator from Sweden, he returned to London and joined the Independent in 1986 and for the next decade was its religious affairs correspondent and parliamentary sketch writer, as well as doing other odd jobs. In 1995 he was awarded the Templeton Prize, which is given to the best religious affairs correspondent in Europe. He now writes regularly for the Guardian and contributes to Prospect, Salon and the New Stateman. His books include The Darwin Wars and In the Beginning Was the Worm. He won the Orwell Prize for Political Writing for Fishing in Utopia. He lives in north Essex, and is married, with two children.


Fishing In Utopia

Andrew Brown

From the 1960s to the 1980s, Sweden was an affluent, egalitarian country envied around the world. Refugees were welcomed, even misfit young Englishmen could find a place there. Andrew Brown spent part of his childhood in Sweden during the 1960s. In the 1970s he married a Swedish woman and worked in a timber mill while helping to raise their small son. Fishing became his passion and his escape. In the mid-1980s his marriage and the country fell apart. The Prime Minister was assassinated. The welfare system crumbled along with the industries that had supported it. Twenty years later, Andrew Brown travelled the length of Sweden in search of the country he had loved, and then hated, and now found he loved again.